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Search for WW1 First Shot Starts Soon

Announcement posted by Whitewater Documentaries 27 Mar 2014

Mornington, Australia 26th March 2014

Deep sea exploration team Southern Ocean Exploration (SOE) is about to begin a

series of missions to find the shot that announced the Great War to the world.

Australia’s most successful shipwreck discovery team believes that the 40kg

steel shell – which Australian forces fired at the escaping German ship Pfalz on

the morning WW1 was declared – lies in about 25 metres of water near the South

Channel of Port Phillip Bay, Melbourne.

Project Longshot is supported by Heritage Victoria, Parks Victoria, The Department of

Veterans Affairs and by the Victorian ANZAC Centenary Committee (VACC)

VACC chairman Ted Baillieu said the government was planning an event to

commemorate the “first shot”, and finding the shell would be a coup. 

“The VACC has already raised for consideration the possible location and recovery effort of that

first shell, if intact,” he said. “If it was possible, such a find would, of course, be of

worldwide significance.”

80 students from Mt Eliza Secondary College are assistng with the project. 

The “RealTime Learning” students are running an awareness campaign and a series of fundraising events.

They will also be managing a social media campaign. Some students will be helping in the on-water


SOE is currently fundraising to purchase a magnetometer that the US navy is using

to find unexploded ordinance in Pearl Harbour.

 “If we get the right equipment we will find the shell.” Southern Ocean Exploration founder Mark Ryan said.

SOE will be searching for the shell throughout 2014 and Whitewater Documentaries

will be filming a documentary about the capture of the SS Pfalz, its later involvement

in the Gallipoli campaign, its sinking in Canada in the 1930s and hopefully the

discovery of the shell.

All participants are volunteering their time for free.

The campaign kicks off on April 10th


Project website

Southern Ocean Exploration

Whitewater Documentaries

Fundraising campaign (live from April 10)